Cat paintings

Better art pics & a side project

I now have decent photos for two of my recent drawings:

The difference between the art photographer's TIFF files and my JPEGS is significant - I compared the two in an earlier blog, and unless I can scan a piece directly onto my scanner, I prefer to go to the pro with the really swell camera (since I am not going to invest in one).
Also, fresh from the art photographer is the first completed cat portrait from a side project that I started last year when my daughter (the cat fanatic) asked me if I would paint portraits of our cats.  I avoided the whole idea for a while because I was visualizing cute cartoon cats and I cannot do cute, until I was looking at paintings by Jean and François Clouet and Hans Holbein the Younger in my art history texts for a portrait assignment I was teaching and a thought flitted through my head: "gee I love those, wouldn't it be fun to paint in that style".  Cat + Fancy Portrait merged and one thing led to another, and I found myself with several highly gessoed and sanded canvases.  After a go at acrylic, then a subsequent 8-month avoidance of painting because of my extreme dislike of acrylic, and then a suggestion to try water soluble oils by another artist who understood my concerns about the risks of toxic painting mediums in a house that also contains children, I finally finished this piece:
The Lady Lucy
(The copyright is tacky, I know, but this is the first piece that I have done that I could visualize on a coffee mug and although I am not above putting the cat portraits on coffee mugs, I don't want someone else stealing my image for that purpose).
Which brings me to the dilemma that I have with my cat portrait side project: what to do with paintings that are completely incongruous with my drawings. 
My solution is a partitian of sorts - I am signing these with an overt nom de plume:  Lucian Parrish (should that be nom de brosse?  I do not speak French).   From his fictitious artist bio:  "Lucian Parrish lives with a bevy of cats in a fancy, old, wrought-iron covered house in Charleston.  Lucian has recently decided to spend his Sunday afternoons in a quaint attic studio painting portraits of his cats (he does not do commissions, by the way - just his own cats).  He states that although it is a slow process and perhaps he will only paint one cat portrait a year, the feeling of moving paint on canvas is a nice way to pass the time."  

On a related side note - to my amusement, this is the first artwork that I have shown around that has garnered a nearly universal response: ohh, are you making prints?!?   The answer is yes: giclées for The Lady Lucy will be available in my studio during the SOMA Studio Tour on June 6th.